Emphasizing the Human side of Human-Computer Interaction

  • 1,636 views
Uploaded on

Field notes from my experience with a better way to build software -- as practiced at Menlo Innovations in Ann Arbor Michigan through the practice of High-tech Anthropology(TM) and Agile/ XP …

Field notes from my experience with a better way to build software -- as practiced at Menlo Innovations in Ann Arbor Michigan through the practice of High-tech Anthropology(TM) and Agile/ XP development in the Menlo Software Factory (TM). Presented on January 6, 2009 to Berliner Bibliothekswissenschaftliches Kolloquium (BBK) (http://www.ibi.hu-berlin.de/institut/veranstaltungen/bbk/bbk-archiv). BBK is a seminar under the auspices of the Institut für Bibliotheks- und Informationswissenschaft (IBI) at Humboldt University in Belrin (http://www.ibi.hu-berlin.de/).

More in: Design , Technology , Education
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Be the first to comment
No Downloads

Views

Total Views
1,636
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
1

Actions

Shares
Downloads
43
Comments
0
Likes
5

Embeds 0

No embeds

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
    No notes for slide
  • „ Leute wissen, was sie denken, wenn sie sehen, was sie sagen. “ – Karl E. Weick Dass bedeutet: Man muss erst was sagen, bevor man es verstehen kann. Kommisch, oder?
  • Lesson 1: Sensemaking is almost always a collaborative effort.
  • “ Well defined” in the sense that they are delimited in time and scope and “well defined” in that they are written from the perspective of the Primary Persona
  • **Soft Control: DEVELOPERS***
  • **Soft Control: SPONSOR and PMs***
  • ***Soft Control: HTA as USER ADVOCATE***
  • ***Soft Control: HTA as USER ADVOCATE***
  • In live presentation, this dots on this slide are added sequentially so that I could explain how they function within a given project.
  • In live presentation, this dots on this slide are added sequentially so that I could explain how they function within a given project.
  • In live presentation, this dots on this slide are added sequentially so that I could explain how they function within a given project.
  • In live presentation, this dots on this slide are added sequentially so that I could explain how they function within a given project.
  • In live presentation, this dots on this slide are added sequentially so that I could explain how they function within a given project.
  • In live presentation, this dots on this slide are added sequentially so that I could explain how they function within a given project.
  • In live presentation, this dots on this slide are added sequentially so that I could explain how they function within a given project.
  • Another illustration of how the various dots work that won’t work in the on-line version…
  • Extra slide – used in discussion

Transcript

  • 1.
    • Emphasizing the Human side of Human-Computer Interaction
    • Tom Allison
    • Masters of Science in Information Science
    • @ University of Michigan’s School of Information
    • High-tech Anthropologist®
    • Information Architect
    • User Experience Designer
  • 2. “ Sensemaking in a Complex and Complicated World”
    • “ Sensemaking” [auf Deutsch: „ die Sinnerzeugung”]
    • A set of processes that is initiated when an individual or organization recognizes the inadequacy of their current understanding of events.
    • Sensemaking is an active two-way process of fitting data into a frame (mental model) and fitting a frame around the data. Neither data nor frame comes first. - Klein et al (2006)
    • Battle cry of Sensemaking: “Make Mistakes Faster!”
  • 3.
    • “ Aha! You’re an HTA!”
    • Rich Sheridan , CEO of Menlo Innovations,
    • to Tom Allison after reviewing his CV at a Job Fair in 2004
  • 4.
    • So, what exactly is “an HTA”?
  • 5. Menlo Innovations & The Menlo Software Factory™
  • 6. Menlo Innovations & The Menlo Software Factory™
    • Menlo Innovations is a proprietary software development company in Ann Arbor, MI.
    • “ The Menlo Software Factory ™ ” is their idea of how one ought to organize people and resources to make software that will be widely adopted.
    • Finally, A “High-Tech Anthropologist ® ” – or “HTA” -- is the name for a subset of the team that makes up the Menlo Software Factory™.
  • 7. The Basic Challenge of Software Development looks easy enough:
      • Collect business requirements.
      • Evaluate stakeholder needs.
      • Produce a useful solution.
  • 8. … but it’s hard …
    • Tools, methodologies and technical know-how required for software development are always increasing in number and complexity.
    • The range and number of potential applications is increasing, in the same way.
  • 9. … no one involved is happy …
      • Analysts, Designers and End-users find their input & designs ignored for the sake of technical implementation issues and changes in the project after their work is done and “handed off”.
      • Project sponsors often feel blind to everything between kick-off and delivery and, frustrated by their inability to steer, will either become passive or make arbitrary decisions .
      • Power generally shifts to Developers under the typical project stressors and the usability suffers as the technical concerns and preoccupations of Developers come to dominate (the so-called “mirror persona” dominates decision making).
      • Meanwhile the Developers themselves feel embattled by unclear communication from designers and arbitrary whims of business sponsors.
  • 10. … and it doesn’t end well .
    • Most software projects fail.
    • The Standish group reports that over 65% of projects are judged “unsuccessful” by their sponsors (and this is a big improvement over the era before iterative development methodologies).
  • 11. Menlo Innovation’s Solution :
    • High-Tech Anthropology ® + Target Persona Exercise + Rational Unified Process + Agile Programming + XP + Pixie Dust (“Feenstaub”)
    • = The Menlo Software Factory ™
  • 12. How and Why It Works:
    • Co-location & Paired work (use of the reticular formation)
    • Iterative and Incremental development
    • High-tech Anthropology ® practice assures end-user focus
    • Story Cards & Distinct Roles facilitate control in the right places:
      • Estimation Sessions
      • Planning Game
      • Magic of the Green Dot
    • “ Make Mistakes Faster!” (The battle cry of sensemaking)
  • 13. Co-location & Paired work
  • 14. Iterative and Incremental development: Time fixed Iterative approach: Analyze Design Config & Code Test & Deploy Waterfall approach:
  • 15. Iterations and Increments: Analyze Design Config & Code Deploy Analyze Design Config & Code Deploy
  • 16. High-Tech Anthropology ®
    • HTAs do initial ethnographic field studies of the potential users and their contexts of use.
    • HTAs, in collaboration with the project’s business sponsors, then bring focus to the project through the Target-Persona Exercise and prioritization of Scenarios of Use to be supported.
    • HTAs are responsible for describing the GUI, producing Story Cards and representing and testing with the targeted end-users as development proceeds.
  • 17. High-Tech Anthropology ®
    • Building project focus via the Target Persona:
    • Example: A company is building a radically new Flow Cytometer and engages Menlo to build the User Interface.
    • HTAs do initial ethnographic field studies of the potential users and their contexts of use.
  • 18.
    • Building project focus via the Target Persona:
    • They then channel the understanding they are building into crafting Personas and conduct the Target Persona Exercise with the sponsor.
    High-Tech Anthropology ®
  • 19. Brad Shore 2 nd year Graduate Student in PIBS* program, Post-qualifying exams University of Wisconsin
        • Goals : 1) Wants to publish 2 or 3 times in order to finish his dissertation and be in a good spot as a candidate for a prime Post Doc. 2) Wants to “do good science.” 3) Wants to understand FC thoroughly as a tool so that he can confidently design his ground-breaking immunology experiments 4) Wants a short learning curve so he can stop practicing and start collecting data 5) Likes to learn from colleagues, but wishes he could teach himself 6) Wants to get today’s work done quickly so he can leave lab and go home 7) Not really sure how the FC machine works, but is curious
        • Level of Expertise : Brad is just beginning to learn FC from Xiaowen Li, a senior graduate student in his lab. “This is cool!”. He knows that he must soon use FC independently as a central tool for his dissertation research. He was introduced to FC in his graduate courses that reviewed topics and methods in molecular and cellular biology. He has read multiple articles which report FC results, so he understands in a general sense the utility of FC, but he is not a “power user” (yet!).
        • Job Context : Academic, middle-to-upper tier school, middlish funding for research. Bob Glasser’s lab.
        • * The graduate P rogram i n B iological S ciences
    Phil Gilman, MD, PhD Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Professor of Immunology, Duke University
        • Goals : 1) Publish 6 papers this year, in top journals 2) Make it to scientific symposia in Taos, Bethesda and Boston this week 3) Figure out how to make his Blackberry work
        • Level of Expertise : A big shot in his field and a superstar in the department. Does no experiments himself. He travels a lot, communicates with his lab by email, phone, lab meetings and impromptu brain storming sessions. Is dependent on his sr. students and postdocs for equipment acquisition recommendations. Relies on his long time Lab Manager (an SRA) to keep everything running on budget.
        • Job Context : Director of a large lab, on faculty 11 years. Many responsibilities outside the lab. Lab includes: 1 Research Investigator, 5 talented Post Docs (from USA, Germany & China), 3 graduate students, 2 Technicians, and 2 Undergraduates. People join and leave the lab once or twice per year. Exceptionally well funded, can generally afford most of what he needs. Married, 2 kids
  • 20. Building project focus via Target Personas
  • 21. Building project focus via Target Personas
  • 22. Brad Shore 2 nd year Graduate Student in PIBS* program, Post-qualifying exams University of Wisconsin
        • Goals : 1) Wants to publish 2 or 3 times in order to finish his dissertation and be in a good spot as a candidate for a prime Post Doc. 2) Wants to “do good science.” 3) Wants to understand FC thoroughly as a tool so that he can confidently design his ground-breaking immunology experiments 4) Wants a short learning curve so he can stop practicing and start collecting data 5) Likes to learn from colleagues, but wishes he could teach himself 6) Wants to get today’s work done quickly so he can leave lab and go home 7) Not really sure how the FC machine works, but is curious
        • Level of Expertise : Brad is just beginning to learn FC from Xiaowen Li, a senior graduate student in his lab. “This is cool!”. He knows that he must soon use FC independently as a central tool for his dissertation research. He was introduced to FC in his graduate courses that reviewed topics and methods in molecular and cellular biology. He has read multiple articles which report FC results, so he understands in a general sense the utility of FC, but he is not a “power user” (yet!).
        • Job Context : Academic, middle-to-upper tier school, middlish funding for research. Bob Glasser’s lab.
        • * The graduate P rogram i n B iological S ciences
  • 23. Story Cards & Distinct Roles
    • Story Cards & Distinct Roles facilitate the right kind of “soft control” in the right places:
    • Estimation Sessions
    • Planning Game
    • Magic of the Green Dot
  • 24. Story Cards: Well-defined Assignments
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 25. Where Storycards Fit into Menlo’s Processes GREEN DOT HTAs Developers PM Users Sponsor
  • 26. Distinct Roles: Project Mangers High-Tech Anthropologists ® Developers Users Sponsor Technology Software
  • 27. Soft Control
    • “ Soft control” can be defined as non-hierarchical modes of coordinated social action.
  • 28. Soft Control: Developer: Estimation & Strictly Delimited Work
  • 29. Soft Control: Sponsor & PM: Planning Game & Work Assignment
  • 30. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 31. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • Yellow Dot = Work in Progress
    • Red Dot = Work Blocked
    • Green Dot = Work Completed
    • (HTA-assessed)
  • 32. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 33. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 34. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 35. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 36. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 37. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 38. Soft Control: HTA: Design & Green Dot
    • JH Brad will need to select run rate before start will function
    • Est 1 wk
        • Brad must select the run rate before the cytometer
        • will start. If he forgets and tries to start the cytometer
        • before setting the run rate he should be warned with the
        • standard tone provide in sound file <warningtone1.wav>
    TA Brad can enter up to 5 decimal places Est: 2 days When Brad loads his cells and before he sets the run parameters he will also need to enter the estimated range and must be able to use as many as five decimal places to express the needed accuracy.
  • 39. How and Why It Works:
    • Co-location
    • Paired work (reticular formation)
    • Iterative development
    • Project Focus via the Target Persona
    • Story Cards & Distinct Roles facilitate control in the right places:
      • Estimation Sessions
      • Planning Game
      • Magic of the Green Dot
    • “ Make Mistakes Faster!” (The battle cry of sensemaking)
  • 40. How and Why it Works
    • Clear design and development targets (Story Cards, Target Personas)
    • Division of roles and responsibilities is highly functional (Estimation, Planning and Green Dotting)
    • Soft Control and Parity for all contributors
    • Lightweight design artifacts and multiple easy means of communication (white boards, work representations on the wall, story cards and co-location)
  • 41. Basically, the polar-opposite of this situation I described earlier:
  • 42. Reflection II: “The Menlo Software Factory™” is, in the end, a “ Sensemaking Factory” .
    • The modern speed of commercial and technological change requires exactly that: a willingness to immerse oneself or ones organization in the complexity and complications of the contemporary world and the sensemaking skills to make your way forward in the face of ambiguity.
  • 43. Conclusion:
    • The path to better software is being forged by companies like Menlo Innovations which provide environments that support collaborative sensemaking , and insist on a division of roles and series of “soft controls” that empower the Human side of the Human-computer Interaction.
  • 44. And if this talk had a Storyboard… Prepare Talk Present Talk
  • 45. Offer the opportunity for questions and discussion
  • 46.
    • END
  • 47. Oh, and I should point out, it actually does work!
    • … and across multiple activity domains:
    • Hands-on Children's’ Museum Exhibit
    • Novel Flow Cytometer User Interface
    • Drug Discovery Phase Data Mining Applications
    • Hand-held Tour Guide for a Bahamas Cruise Line
    • Blue-sky Application Idea Generation for 3D Untrasound Technology (HTA-only project)
    • All of this innovation after the “dotcom bubble” - and in an area of the country that has yet to fully recover.
    • If you’re ever in Ann Arbor, MI, drop by and take a look!
    • http://menloinnovations.com/
  • 48.
    • Tom Allison
    • (Thomas L. Allison II)
    • < [email_address] >
    - http://www.linkedin.com/in/thomaslallisonii - https://www.xing.com/profile/Tom_Allison
  • 49.
    • Finally, for more details on my background and pointers to interesting material related to all the topics discussed, here, visit my Wiki page on Ward Cunningham ’s original Wiki:
    • http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?TomAllison